Terminated council workers plan court challenge

Almost 70 council workers from the Interity Bus Terminus have been served with termination letters on suspicion of being former MMD government sympathisers.

And a senior councillor has been implicated in the termination of jobs of the mostly general workers who would be replaced by suspected PF cadres appointed by his office.

Some affected workers complained that although management was not mandated to fire anybody, Station Manager Penjani Chirambo had gone ahead and terminated work contracts for all suspected non-PF members in order to bring in their PF cadre colleagues on board, and they now plan to sue.

“Our contracts have not been renewed because we were all employed under the MMD leadership and it is not fair.  We know they are trying to bring their friends back into the system even after some of them were fired for financial mismanagement,” one of the affected employees complained.

Earlier, management at the station had explained that only those workers who had issues with their work performance would have their contracts renewed, but the number of those who have lost their jobs explained otherwise.

Among the 69 people who have lost their jobs include some cashiers, physical security guards and receptionists and general workers.

Another employee said it was unfortunate that their colleagues had lost employment and their only source of income in preference for the ruling party cadres who were without any experience at the jobs.

He accused the ruling PF of failing to deliver on their promises of providing jobs for the people, even those in lowly paid jobs as the ones who had just lost their jobs like sweepers and receptionists.

“I would want those mentioned in the scam to exculpate themselves, to distance themselves from the stories surrounding the station that they have instructed the Intercity management to fire non-PF workers to create opportunity for the ruling party cadres,” he said.

There have been financial irregularities exposed at the station, linked to senior council officials, including issues of double receipting and funds embezzlements which have surfaced at the station, and those relevant government departments were already investigating the matter to bring sanity to the local authority.

The Intercity Bus Terminus is run by Lusaka City Council (LCC), but efforts to reach City mayor Daniel Chisenga failed as his phone went unanswered.